SoSe 15: S-Medieval English Literatures II: Female Voices in Geoffrey Chaucer's "Canterbury Tales"
Women are a major subject of Chaucer's writings, and their place in his work has attracted much recent critical attention. It is now generally acknowledged that his treatment of women is ... Lesen Sie weiter
Women are a major subject of Chaucer's writings, and their place in his work has attracted much recent critical attention. It is now generally acknowledged that his treatment of women is characterized by psychological subtlety and a profound sympathy for the women's human condition. We will explore Chaucer's handling of gender issues, of power roles, and of misogynistic stereotypes and pro-feminine views. Centre stage will here be our study of the frequently discussed choice between the via erotica and via mystica, the literary treatment of subversive feminine voices and of physical and psychological violence among the sexes. Among the characters you will meet will be the Prioress, a nun whose thoughts might be just a bit too worldly, the young Amazon Emelye, the sexually restless young wife Alisoun, the devoted wife Custance, the self-assertive Wife of Bath, and the self-confident hen Pertelote.
Language of instruction: English. Required language level: C1-C2.
Procedure and assessment: Each week poems and texts will be earmarked for study at home and discussion in class. During the course, students will be asked to give a brief presentation. The final mark will be based on regular and active participation in class and a final essay.
Students are expected to have acquired one of the following two editions by the beginning of the semester: The Riverside Chaucer, general editor Larry D. Benson (Oxford: OUP, 1988, 3rd edition, 2008), or the Penguin Classics edition of the Canterbury Tales, edited by Jill Mann (Harmondsworth: Penguin, 2005).